The "Franco-German Peace Plan"

loupaulsen at loupaulsen at
Mon Feb 10 11:22:57 MST 2003

Shane Mage wrote:

> In any case, in a different context you wrote:
> "Here in the United
> States, we have a duty to fight any tendency toward thinking that Iraq has
> any moral duty to accept the "Franco-German peace plan""

> So: By  "Iraq" are you signifying  the Iraqi peoples,
>        who you (and Johannes) agree would overwhelmingly
>        support the Chirac/Schroeder/Putin peace plan

This is a misrepresentation.  Johannes and Lou Proyect allowed that they might
prefer to be occupied than nuked, blasted with cruise missiles, etc.  (This is
different from saying they would 'overwhelmingly support the plan.) But I
didn't offer an opinion on the point, and I don't have one.  Reporters over
there seem to say that a lot of the Iraqis are ready to resist.  A majority
might be prepared to resist heroically, for all you or I know.  I don't think
you have better data on it than I do, so why speculate?

>why would you deny
>that a ruler has a "moral obligation" to accept a
>proposal which his people overwhelmingly support
>and which would spare them, and many others,

But even if we did have hard data that the majority of the workers and
peasants of Iraq were prepared to accept some set of terms of capitulation to
the imperialists, and that Saddam Hussein, personally, was unwilling to accept
those terms, how do you believe that 'self-respecting Marxists' in imperialist
countries should approach such a situation?  Is this the kind of situation in
which you can reasonably intervene to defend the 'democratic right' of the
Iraqi people to surrender their sovereignty?  At a time when the imperialists
have their guns pointed at the Iraqis' heads (this time my usage is
deliberate), are you willing to be the Greek chorus who explains to Saddam
that he is morally obliged to submit?  This is precisely the point at which
Marxists ought to point out the limitations of the 'democratic model', and it
is precisely the point at which you are converting yourself into a vulgar

More to the point, since our energies in our own countries are directed first
and foremost to fighting our own imperialisms, AND NOT SADDAM HUSSEIN, what
are the practical implications of our and your 'moral understanding' in that
fight?  OUR practical implications are that when and if the imperialists
decide to blame the war (impending or actual) on Saddam's intransigence, we
intervene to brand them as liars and murderers.  YOUR practical implications
seem to be that you are going to take issue with us, excuse the imperialists,
and explain that the war has really become Saddam Hussein's fault after all.
I'm sorry, but I would be ashamed to be self-respecting at such a price.

Lou Paulsen

What the hell is this Thunderbolt business?

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